Saturday, 21 October 2017

TBC: When The Moon Comes

If there's one thing I've noticed since I started the Teebz's Book Club, it's that there are exponentially more books for adults than there are for kids when it comes to hockey. Teebz's Book Club is living proof of this fact, so I'm always tickled when a publisher mentions that they have a new book suitable for kids that deals in the topic of hockey. Teebz's Book Club is proud to review When The Moon Comes, written by Paul Harbridge, illustrated by Matt James, and published by Tundra Books. When The Moon Comes has been shortlisted for the 2017 Governor General's Award for Young People's Literature, and that's a huge honour for any book. I was quite excited to have the opportunity to read and review this book for that very reason, so let's find out if it lived up to its hype!

From the press release, "Paul Harbridge is the author of the picture book Helena's Voyage and several published short stories. A graduate of the University of Toronto, he works as a speech-language pathologist with adults with developmental disabilities. He and his wife, Isabel, live in Etobicoke, Ontario, and are the proud parents of Daniel and Helena." Paul won a Judge's Choice award in 1988 in the Toronto Star for his short story entitled "Hunting With His Dad" about growing up in Gravenhurst and going hunting with his father in the woods. He's also a season ticket holder for the CWHL's Toronto Furies! His website can be found here.

From the same press release, "Matt James is a painter, illustrator and musician. His books have won many awards, including the Boston Globe-Horn Book Award, the Marilyn Baillie Picture Book Award, the New Mexico Book Award, and the Governor General's Award. Matt lives in Toronto with his family." He was also an artist for the 2013 TD Summer Reading Club, and his works have been featured in the True North Gallery, also known as The Music Gallery of Fine Art, is the world’s first fine art gallery dedicated to visual art by musicians, and artwork connected to the music experience. His website can be found here.

When the opportunity to review When The Moon Comes was presented to me, the book was pitched by the publisher as being of the same nostalgic factors as Roch Carriere's classic tome The Hockey Sweater. This is a very lofty statement to make, so I was instantly curious as to whether When The Moon Comes could carry that weight.

When The Moon Comes follows a group of kids who await the right moment to make the trek through the forest behind Arthur's farm to the pond formed when the beaver dam flooded the gully. The night finally arrives in November when the full moon appears and the ice is strong and fast. In the darkness of night, the full moon acts as a floodlight on the kids who have made the trek to skate on the pristine ice, sit around the fire with Arthur and enjoy warm beverages, and skate until the wee hours of the morning. For many parents, this was their first hockey experiences in small towns across Canada.

Honestly, the imagery within the covers of When The Moon Comes is fantastic, and Matt James' work should be commended. His illustrations fill each page and capture the moments of the story beautifully. I`m not sure if Mr. James will ever be reproducing these illustrations, but I`m quite certain he could fetch a few dollars if he ever decided to make them available.
On the beaver flood, I feel through the snow with my stick, and Arthur is right. The ice is waiting, perfect.

"Wonderful ice," says Arthur. "Magic ice."
As I stated above, the comparison to Monsieur Carrier's story of The Hockey Sweater may have been a little presumptuous simply for how timeless the latter story is. That being said, When The Moon Comes offers the same nostalgic feeling in its story, and I can honestly say that I have trekked to a few outdoors rinks across school fields in a foot of snow just for a skate in my time. When The Moon Comes has the potential to be a story similar to The Hockey Sweater, but it needs a few more years of telling and retelling the story under its belt to reach the status and revere that Monsieur Carrier's story holds.

All that being said, though, I really enjoyed the whimsical story and excellent illustrations in When The Moon Comes. According to his website, Mr. Harbridge had been sitting on this story for twenty-five years before finally publishing it! In refining the story over the years, Mr. Harbridge has crafted the story to pull on the heartstrings and have us dip back into simpler times where a frozen pond and a few frigid nights turned winter into a playground for kids. It's in those memories that parents will reminisce as they read this story to their children, and those children will see the memories come flooding back in their parents' eyes. Because of this, When The Moon Comes is absolutely deserving of the Teebz's Book Club Seal of Approval!

When The Moon Comes has been out for a month in local bookstores and libraries, and I highly recommend you find a copy for your young reader. This book is suitable for all readers, including the youngest and developing readers, and, with any hope, it should start finding a place on night tables and bookshelves for all children across this great land!

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

Friday, 20 October 2017

Buzzer Beater

Ever since UND decided to eliminate its women's hockey program, I have been drifting without a team to follow. There are players that I'm cheering for - Wisconsin's Kristen Campbell, for example - but I needed a new program to sink my loyalty into, and I may have found it with the Colgate Raiders. I made the commitment after Krista Patronick took over the reigns as Director of Women's Hockey Operations at Colgate University and appeared on The Hockey Show. Needless to say, I may have hitched my wagon to one heckuva program after tonight's game!

I had asked Krista when she appeared on the show if she was worried about the early schedule with teams such as St. Cloud State, Northeastern, and Mercyhurst on the docket, but she said she wasn't worried at all. At the time, I might have dismissed the comment as an employee of Colgate putting faith in her own program, but it seems my dismissal might have been both erroneous and premature. After downing both St. Cloud State and Northeastern by a combined 16-2, the fifth-ranked program in the nation welcomed Mercyhurst to the Class of 1965 Arena.

Goaltender Liz Auby had set the Colgate women's team's shutout streak at 308:44 in her three shutouts to start the season before Northeastern finally found a crack in the Auby wall late in the second period, so Mercyhurst had a tall task in front of them as they began the weekend series with the Raiders tonight. While Mercyhurst entered the game with a 1-4-1 record, Colgate certainly wouldn't take the Lakers lightly.

After Colgate surrendered a goal late in the third period to allow Mercyhurst to tie the game at 3-3, overtime loomed. It would take nearly the entire five-minute extra frame to find a winner, but we did find one just in the nick of time! One day after she took over Colgate's Instagram account, Jessie Eldridge went and did this.
Despite what the voice on the video stated, Eldridge scored with one second remaining in overtime to give the Colgate Raiders their fifth-straight win to open the season! The great lead pass came from the player who did the pickpocketing of the Laker in the offensive zone, and freshman Malia Schneider went tape-to-tape to send Eldridge in with speed. Moments later, there were team hugs in the corner as it was game, set, match with Eldridge's second goal of the night!

I feel pretty confident in my choice for a new NCAA team to follow after seeing them start the season 5-0-0. They play Mercyhurst again tomorrow, and then they go on the road against the Clarkson Golden Knights and perhaps their toughest match to date with the sixth-ranked St. Lawrence Saints next Saturday. I have faith, though, that players lake Shae Labbe, Jessie Eldridge, Shelby Perry, Malia Schneider, and Liz Auby will do their part in keeping this magical season alive!

Heckuvan ending tonight, though. Well done, Raiders!

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

Thursday, 19 October 2017

The Hockey Show - Episode 265

The Hockey Show, Canada's only campus-produced radio show that strictly talks hockey, is back tonight with a special show as we're knee-deep in Pledge-O-Rama for another season! Pledge-O-Rama is UMFM's annual pledge drive that goes to help us fund capital projects at the radio station such as equipment upgrades, a new transmission tower that was installed and activated this summer, and other major upgrades in and around the station. Being that UMFM is a non-profit station, any black ink on the bottom line gets invested back into the station, so Pledge-O-Rama helps us out immensely in bring you quality and unique programming that you won't find anywhere else!

Tonight, Beans and I are thrilled to welcome this beauty to the show. That's Rob Ullman, and he's a talented and incredible artist who has a pile of success to his name with everything he's been involved with in his career. He has worked with minor-league baseball's Richmond Flying Squirrels to come up with their eleven t-shirt designs this past summer, creates his own unique sports artwork, he's the staff cartoonist at Dejan Kovacevic's Pittsburgh-based website, and he's contributed to a number of other websites with his artwork. In other words, he's a pretty darn good at what he does! Tonight, Beans and I will talk to Rob about his art, jerseys, his beloved Pittsburgh Penguins, his family and more as we get to know Rob Ullman tonight on The Hockey Show's Pledge-O-Rama Extravaganza!

I was going to paste the whole rigmarole about the Pledge-O-Rama stuff again, but I did that last night. Click here for more details! And remember that any donation of $50 or more gets you entered into the draws for Rob's art!

So now you might be saying, "Teebz, I know Rob!" or "Teebz, I like his art and want to know more about him. How can I listen?" We suggest that you download the UMFM app on your phone or tablet. It's the easiest and most convenient way to listen to any of UMFM's great shows any time of the day, so go get it! Just follow this link on your iDevice or this link for your Android device and get the UMFM app! It's never been easier to tune into The Hockey Show or UMFM! Download the UMFM app today, and don't miss any of our great programming or shows!

If you prefer social media, we try to remain up-to-speed there as well! Email all show questions and comments - including Pledge-O-Rama questions - to hockeyshow@umfm.com! Tweet me anytime with questions you may have by hitting me up at @TeebzHBIC on Twitter. You can also post some stuff to Facebook if you use the "Like" feature, and I always have crazy stuff posted there that doesn't make it to the blog or show.

Tonight, Teebz and Beans talk The Tragically Hip, hockey, art, family, jerseys, Pittsburgh, Richmond, and more as we get to know artist Rob Ullman only on The Hockey Show found on 101.5 UMFM and on the UMFM app!

PODCAST: October 19, 2017: Episode 265

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

Wednesday, 18 October 2017

Pledge-O-Rama Preview

UMFM, the home of The Hockey Show, is currently in its week-long pledge drive known as Pledge-O-Rama. Pledge-O-Rama is important to the station because it helps us raise funds for capital improvements that often are priced beyond our normal operating budget. Some of the improvements we've done over the years include paying for the remote broadcast units, upgrades to station audio equipment, and covering the costs of a new transmission tower as we move from analog to digital and remain current for another twenty-five years. Needless to say this is a big week for the station!

If you enjoy our crazy program or any of the other programs on UMFM, The Hockey Show wants you to donate. As of right now, we're sitting at $30,033.46 of our $34,000 goal, so we're not far off with a couple of days to go. You can make a donation in a few different ways, so let's get to this.
  1. You can always call us at 204-474-6610.
  2. Email us at pledge@umfm.com and we'll get back to you.
  3. Use the online donation form.
  4. Visit us if you're in the University of Manitoba area.
What do you get for donating? There's some great shwag up for grabs!
  • UMFM's Friends With Benefits Card: good for discounts and offers at a more than 40 local businesses!
  • UMFM Tote Bag: a classic heavy duty canvas bag!
  • UMFM Beer Stein: we're proudly calling this mug the Dietmar in honor of our favorite German listener!
  • UMFM T-shirts: the artwork was done by excellent local designer Roberta Landreth, and there are two designs you can choose from (of grab both)!
  • UMFM Toque: our new style is made by Carhartt, the premier manufacturer of warm, dependable outdoor gear!
  • UMFM sweatshirt: the same designs on the t-shirts can be found with sleeves and fleece!
  • UMFM earplugs: everyone gets a pair for donating, and we'll even toss in some stickers and temporary tattoos!
So how many clams will this stuff set you back?
But here's where the fun part happens. The Hockey Show wants you to get all that stuff above at the level you're able to make a donation. We're going to add some more fun on top of whatever incentives you want, though, as we have a pile of stuff to give away. All it will take is a donation at the $50 level or more, and we'll enter your name in the draws we'll be making!

Our guest tomorrow is the amazing artist Rob Ullman. Rob worked with minor-league baseball's Richmond Flying Squirrels to come up with their eleven t-shirt designs this past summer, and that's a huge honour for the Virginia-based artist. He also does a pile of other sports artwork, he's the staff cartoonist at Dejan Kovacevic's Pittsburgh-based website, and he's contributed to a number of other websites with his comics. I am proud and honoured to call him a friend, and I'm happy to announce that we'll be giving away a pile of his artwork!

We have a pile of hockey prints to give away. There are six (6) Mark Scheifele prints, one (1) Sidney Crosby print, one (1) Claude Giroux print, one (1) Pekka Rinne print, and one (1) Jonathan Toews print. Everyone who donates at the $50 level or higher will have one of these prints added to their UMFM prizes while supplies last. If there are more than ten people who donate - which would be awesome as that's $500 or better into UMFM's coffers - we'll draw to see who receives a print.

Maybe you want something more original with a little more depth? We'll give away two (2) copies of both editions of Rob's hockey comic books entitled Old-Timey Hockey Tales! Each of the two-volume comic book packages comes with an Atom-Bomb Bikini sticker and a Rob-designed "51 Years" sticker commemorating the five Pittsburgh Stanley Cups in 51 years! Each of the comic books illustrates some hockey history such as the Miracle on Manchester, Gratoony the Loony, the '78 Leafs and their invisible names, and the story of Bill Barilko. Needless to say, these are great additions to a hockey fan's bookshelf!

Maybe you're more into Rob's pin-up work and want something like that? We have a prize pack that we'll draw for consisting of one (1) copy of the Nordiques-themed cover of Blue Lines Volume 2 and an original Rob Ullman Nordiques hockey card! As per Rob, the book contains "digest-sized collections of my hockey-themed pin-up commissions and Stanley Cup playoff drawings" and is numbered 17/300 as it is a limited publishing run. The Nordiques hockey card is an original drawing of what appears to be Eric Lindros in a Nordiques uniform, and is labeled 6/27/12 on the reverse!

Of course, Rob also does larger cardstock art, and this is one of those options. Rob has sent an inked Terry Sawchuk original design, and it's a beauty. Terry, as you may be aware, was born in Winnipeg, and made a name for himself in the NHL with Detroit, Toronto, Los Angeles, and Boston in his illustrious career before he passed away on May 31, 1970. Sawchuk was born in the north end of Winnipeg, and raised in Elmwood where he not only played hockey, but also suited up for the Elmwood Giants baseball club where he won the league's batting title in 1948! If you're a fan of the Red Wings or you want a great discussion piece for your wall at home, this is the piece! We'll make a draw for this as well!

Finally, we have one last original piece of art that we'll draw for tomorrow evening, and that's for a Winnipeg Jets pin-up girl that Rob had made up specifically for this event!
This piece of art would be a great addition to any Jets fan-cave, and it looks outstanding! We'll include this in the draws as well!

Again, we're excited to have Rob on the show tomorrow, and we're pushing hard towards the $34,000 goal for UMFM. We're less than $4000 away from the goal, and we really could use any and all support you can provide. Anything over $50 not only gets you the great UMFM gear, but entered into the draws for this great art from Rob Ullman, so please give what you can to help the radio station!

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Apolitical?

When asked in early May about the NHL's strategy for dealing with outspoken players following the NFL's ordeal when the President of the United States focused his social media voice on the NFL's players, Gary Bettman said, "I would encourage and I do encourage our players to do it on their own time. When they're showing up for work to participate in a game that people are focused on, care about, pay a lot of money to attend, then it should be all about the game. That block of time should be apolitical, and we can use our platforms to demonstrate diversity, inclusiveness, educating communities on good causes whether or not it's health or the environment. But when the game is being played, it should be about the game because that's what fans want."

The image above was taken in January when Mr. Bettman was in Calgary speaking to the Calgary Chamber where he uttered, "It is not an overstatement to say the future stability, viability and continuity of the Calgary Flames, and perhaps the city of Calgary, rests on the achievement of CalgaryNEXT."

Those words piqued the interest of then-Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi who wanted to speak with Bettman over this statement. Over the course of the next few months, they had their discussions, and it seemed the two men were no closer at finding a resolution to the Flames' arena issue as they were in January. All of this culminated in the Flames basically breaking off talks with the Mayor's office over not getting what they want - specifically, public money that they don't have to repay to build an arena. As the frsutration boiled over, Gary Bettman told voters that if they want to keep the Flames in Calgary, they should make their voices heard at the ballot boxes in the mayoral election.

Monday at midnight, Nenshi's main rival, Bill Smith, conceded the election when Nenshi had 112,503 votes to Smith's 97,756. Mayor Nenshi and all the incumbent councillors had secured their seats for another four years despite Gary Bettman's imploring people to reconsider and the public grandstanding by the Calgary Flames over Nenshi's refusal to do business the Flames' way.

For a commissioner who is on record telling his players to be apolitical while on the NHL's time, why is he allowed to make comments as he did without punishment? I get that he represents the owners in this battle, but the only proper title for Commissioner Bettman to use is Hypocrite Bettman if he's allowed to try and sway an election while preventing the players in his legal from protesting peacefully.

To make matters worse, employees of the Calgary Flames took to social media to voice their opinions upon hearing the reports that Nenshi had claimed his third term in office. Both of these tweets have now been deleted, but they lived in the ether earlier today.
That's Calgary Sports and Entertaiment ‎Vice President of Sports Property Sales & Marketing Gordon Norrie telling everyone who he is voting for via Twitter. Norrie's tweet leaves little room for doubt as what he'd like to see in the election results as well.

That's Calgary Flames Director of Communications & Media Relations Sean Kelso expressing himself eloquently once the election results were being tabulated and broadcast on Monday night. It seems his choice of words towards the citizens of Calgary might not be the best example that a Director of Communications & Media Relations would want on his resumé. Nonetheless, voila.

And to think that Flames President and CEO Ken King said to a crowd at the Calgary Chamber on September 25, "We're not in politics. It is impertinent, imprudent and inappropriate for us to try to intercede on the political front."

Foot-in-mouth much, Flames?

Sports is a microcosm of society. Everything happening in and around local cities and regions affects its citizens, both private and corporate. Often as a means of civic pride, sports teams will try to rally communities in an effort to bring people together. In the Flames' case, however, it seems that they have no clue what their community wants since Nenshi ran on a platform that included an entertainment and cultural district in Victoria Park on the eastern edge of Calgary's Beltline neighbourhood where the Mayor had proposed the new arena be built.

With Mayor Nenshi officially back for another four years and the Flames still needing an arena, it might be time to swallow some pride, come back to the bargaining table, and figure out how the Calgary Flames can be good corporate citizens of the city of Calgary without emptying the wallets of Calgary taxpayers. This shouldn't be a difficult negotiation for the Flames if they can make a deal that doesn't bleed the city dry without injecting some sorely needed funds into important things like infrastructure maintenance, police and fire funding, and social programs in the city. Good corporate citizens would work with their neighbours rather than reaching into their pockets to build a new barn.

Your move, Flames. The people of Calgary have spoken. And maybe get Sean Kelso to issue an apology while you're at it.

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!